Law School is Expensive, Not Impossible: How to Navigate Student Aid

matt lenhard headshot

Please welcome Matt Lenhard, Co-Founder at LendEDU. LendEDU is a marketplace for student loans and student loan refinancing. Today he is sharing the different ways to pay for your law school education. 

Welcome, Matt!

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My Federal Debt and Me: The Truth About Income Based Repayment

Marina ModlinPlease welcome Marina Modlin, wills and trusts attorney and author of The Independence Track — a resource for freelance attorneys. Today, Marina is sharing her student loan story and what she’s learned about Income Based Repayment (IBR). 

Welcome, Marina!

So, the other day I called the people who are servicing my consolidated federal law school loans, with a vague hope of finding out the terms of IBR, or Income Based Repayment, in which I am enrolled.

Now, I’m not usually the kind of person to be enrolled in something that I don’t understand — but with these loans, I felt like I had no choice: I couldn’t afford a regular payment, yet I couldn’t find any coherent documentation online, and the servicing company back at the time when I first enrolled was not able to explain it to me (they have since gone out of business. Can you even imagine what it’d take to go out of business in this industry?!) [Read more…]

6 Tips for Applying for Bar Admission on a Budget

Barrister on a Budget - Jenny MaxeyLaw school can sometimes seem like one expense after another. And it doesn’t end when classes conclude — You still have to pass the bar exam and get admitted!

Today, we’re pleased to welcome Jenny Maxey, author of Barrister on a Budget: Investing in Law School…Without Breaking the Bank, who has some tips on getting admitted without going broke. Enjoy!

Whether you’re a 1L or a few months away from graduation, that desire to become an attorney cannot actually be fulfilled until you are licensed. And even though we all know this is the case, after being hunkered down in the law library for hours or preparing for those always-looming finals sometimes the application process for bar admission can still turn up as a surprise — and a several thousand dollar surprise at that!

However, you can keep the cost of applying for admission down through budgeting and taking steps in advance.
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How Do I Keep From Declaring Bankruptcy After Law School? An Interview with Bankruptcy Lawyer Jeena Cho

jeena choLet’s face it — law school is expensive (very expensive) and most students graduate with a ton of debt. Pair that with a lousy job market, and it’s easy to start thinking about ways to make your student loans go away.

Today, I’ve called in San Francisco bankruptcy attorney Jeena Cho of JC Law Group PC to offer her counsel.

Take it away, Jeena!

I’m getting ready to start law school, and I’m very concerned about the loans I’m taking out and my overall finances. What are the three most important things to keep in mind as I go through law school, to avoid finding myself in your office declaring bankruptcy?

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Four Useful Tips for Legal Networking on a Budget

Jenny L. MaxeyIf you’re looking for a legal job, you know you need to network. Right? Well, that can get expensive — which is tricky when you have no income!

We’re thrilled to welcome Jenny L. Maxey, author of “Barrister on a Budget: Investing in Law School…without Breaking the Bank” who’s here to share some tips for networking on a budget. Take it away!

Maybe you’ve just taken the bar exam, but you still haven’t found a job. Or, maybe you are a rising 3L just beginning your search. Either way, unemployment is more common now than ever, but there are still ways to find employment and it’s never too early to position yourself for better employment potential.

One key strategy is to broaden your network.

In good times, as the saying goes who you know is more important than what you know. In the legal profession you need both, but during a recession the “who” becomes critical.

Better yet, you can expand your network without racking up out-of-control expenses.

Here are a few tips:

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12 Things I’d Do if I Were An Unemployed 3L

Tips for unemployed 3LsWith all the gloom and doom reporting out lately (only half of graduating law students can expect jobs! and so forth), I’ve been thinking about what someone who’s graduating from law school in a couple of months without a job offer can do, right now, to improve their prospects.

I don’t guarantee these suggestions are right for everyone, and I’m sure there’s other stuff I haven’t thought of, but let’s at least start the conversation. If you’ve got other suggestions, jump in! (And don’t miss this awesome series from guest poster Katie Slater: Job Hunting for 3Ls and Recent Grads.)

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Struggling with Your Student Loan Debt? The Law School Loan Expert is Here to Help

Heather Jarvis - Student Loan ExpertToday’s interview is with Heather Jarvis, a student loan expert who was formerly a capital defense attorney. Heather now dedicates her expertise to helping student loan borrowers make better decisions so that higher education can be a reality for all — not just those who can afford it. She’s got great info on dealing with law school loan debt, so let’s get to it!

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5 Non-Obvious Ways Law School Loan Debt Will Impact Your Life

MoneyIf you’re considering law school, there’s a very good chance you’re planning to take out student loans. (About 80% of law students graduate with some debt, and the average amount borrowed is over $100,000. That works out to over $1,000/month in loan payments on a standard 10 year repayment schedule.)

Scary numbers, when almost half of new law grads make between $40,000 and $65,000 a year.

But what about the less obvious impact of borrowing tons of money?

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Thinking About Public Interest Work? Find Out About LRAP, Getting the Job You Want, and More!

MoneyToday’s interview is with Radhika Singh Miller, program manager for Educational Debt Relief and Outreach at Equal Justice Works. If you’re considering public interest work, Equal Justice Works has your back!

They’ll help you chose the right law school, get the in-school experience you need, and fund your work after you graduate. In addition, they’re on the front lines of the education debt fight, helping ensure that important public interest work can continue, even in the face of crippling student debt loads.

Without further ado, here’s Radhika!

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How Can Anyone Afford to Do Public Interest Work? Equal Justice Works Explains Some Options

Equal Justice Works logoLots of people start law school thinking they’d eventually like to do public interest work. Unfortunately, many of them soon encounter the harsh financial realities of such a path.

Today’s guest post, from Susan K. Gurley, Deputy Director of Equal Justice Works, outlines what Equal Justice Works is doing to help young lawyers stay on the public interest path, despite the obstacles.

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